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Sunday, December 6, 2009

Express Sleeves and Maxing out the Hem on the LRC

The coat is done except for the three buttons to be sewn on. Pics will be coming but its late and I also wanted to first share with you a couple of techniques I used.

I decided to use Nancy Zieman's "Express Sleeve" and I am very pleased with the results. It is easy and quick and gives a lovely tailored finish.

* First cut the two sleeves and linings making sure all markings are clear.
* Cut off the width of the seam allowance from the lining hem edge ONLY . In my case this was 3/8ths of an inch cut off the wrist edge of the sleeve lining.
* Sew the lining and sleeve together at the hem edge.
* Press to meld. Press seam open. Then match the armscye edges of the sleeve and the sleeve lining. This will pull up the fashion fabric to the wrong side the width of the seam allowance.

* Press the sleeve hem edge again with the new fold you just created.
* Carefully line up the seams of the sleeves taking cared with the junction of the fashion fabric and the lining fabric.
* Sew them all the way across taking care to match when you cross the intersection at the hem edge. You are sewing from  armscye to armscye.

* Press the seams open. This is a great chance to use your seam stick. My seam stick is a 1 1/4 inch dowel I bought at Joanns and cut to 18 inches. Love it. You can see I am using a press cloth which is critical with cashmere. Cashmere is very much like hair and scorches easily at higher heat. A pressing cloth is a must.
* Stitch the fashion fabric sleeve into the armscye in the manner you prefer. For this little coat I did a second row of triple zigzag stitching. Then I cut back to that but only in the underarm area. The SA was left in tact and pressed toward the sleeve for a nice finish, kind of a scaled down sleeve head. 
* Once the fashion fabric sleeve was lovingly pressed I reached thru and grabbed the lining and pulled it thru the sleeve. The underarm seams were matched up. The lining sleeve gets its SA turned under and pinned, then stitched to the coat lining.

  This really took just minutes and is such a nice finish. The sleeve is now done.

Another challenge on this coat was dealing with the hem, neck, and CF edges. Gail Doane's pattern is lined to the cut edge and then bound with bias. I wanted buttonholes as well as a longer length for my little coat. I measured my buttons earlier and new I needed to add a bit to the CF. Then I did my buttonholes. I cut an edge to edge lining but didn't really want that. I just don't have good luck with them, finding that they can easily bag in spots. It took me a bit to wrap my head around how I was going to get the needed longer length and the buttonholes in but here is what I worked out:
* My lining was cut edge to edge  and included the new additional width for the buttonholes
* The edges of the lining were interfaced like a facing from neck to hem. 
* I folded under and pressed the lining hem edge 1/4 inch and then turned it another inch. I triple zigzagged it to hem it.
* The hem of the coat was interfaced as well. I needed something to catch my hemstitches on. I fused on a weft insertion that I love, 60 inch width and all.
* I cut a 2 1/2 inch wide bias band for the hem and folded under the top long edge 1/4 inch and pressed that in.

* The collar was basted on. Then the lining was sewn on leaving the last 2 1/4 inches near the hem unstitched.
 * The bias band was placed right sides together and stitched to the bottom edge of the coat. I stitch around the corner, which I had rounded, and up to where the lining stitching stopped.This was then pressed.
* The hem was now catchstitched to the weft insertion interfacing.
* The lining bottom corner was folded in and hand stitched to the hem band.

The coat is done and waiting for the three buttons. Hopefully pics will happen soon. I think this will be a challenge to photograph without a child in it.  Till then........Bunny


  1. Thank you for showing how to do Express Sleeves! I've read about this technique, but your pictures in process helped me see exactly how it's done.

    I linked to your tutorial on Craft Gossip Sewing:


  2. I have done lined sleeves this way for a long time but never knew it was a Nancy Zieman thing. Neato! In fact, I actually did a similar method to sew India's french sleeve on her Queen Katherine gown, but it was a tad harder because the sleeve goes down to a sharp point on the hand and then has a placket. It was much faster doing this.

    Bunny, this little jacket is just wonderful! I can't wait to see modeled pics.

    And you did not say what the doctor had to say. I am continuing to pray.

  3. Very cool. Will definitely file this away for future use. Can't wait to see the finished LRC.

  4. Thank you for sharing this technique and taking the time to add so many pictures.

    I do hope you are feeling well now.

  5. Thanks for all the detailed pictures of your process. Very helpful.

  6. Yes, thankyou, very detailed and very impressive.

  7. but your pictures in process helped me see exactly how it's done

    Work from home India

  8. Thanks for sharing this job... but I want to see the pic of finished LRC... Nice job...!

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